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Hardball With Chris Matthews

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  MSNBC    Hardball With Chris Matthews    News/Business.  (2011)  (CC)  

    July 15, 2011
    2:00 - 3:00am EDT  

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good evening. i'm chris matthews. up in new york. let me start tonight with a civil war going on in august today. nothing north versus south or right versus left. it's an historic test of who will take the wheel, who will drive the car? will it be the grown-ups in the front seat or the kids crying and complaining and threatening in the back seat? on one side of those kids in the back seat, tea party members of congress and their stay at home blogging cheerleaders who either don't care about the consequence of default of the u.s. not meeting its obligations. that's looking like a joke. willing to risk calamity, embrace it, showing how dedicated they are to not raising the debt ceiling. on the other side are democrats and some republicans who understand this is not a game. there's no fail-safe position
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after default. so who's going to win? will it be the men and women who worry about the country? or those who fear most of you not a failure of their country to meet its bills but how scary it might be to go to the next tea party meeting when the town misfit stands up and says, you have betrayed us. you have voted to raise the debt ceiling. that's what it's about. that's what this civil war is all about and the question before the country is whether we're going to keep our economic soundness. everyone in the treasury notes to turn out to be on the other hand junk bonds. we want the land ever free to be the land of the dead in beat. if not, try something now. call your congressman or women and say you don't want the crisis to go where it's headed. the number, by the way, you want to write this down. think about it. the number of congress, for any member of congress or senate, go to this phone number, ask for them. they may help to you know who your congressman is, if you don't know. 202-225-3121. again, 202-225-3121.
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if you forget that, it's in the phone book or in 411. let's start with the meeting at the white house gong on this evening right now. bureau chief and michael steele, former chair of the republican national committee, both msnbc analysts. chairman steele, you're used to running meeting. used to getting things done. this fight, i don't think it's left versus right right now, although there's always the argument of ideology in everything we do. >> right. >> it seems to be about people recognizing if we default in our debt in this country, if we don't meet our bills, do we get into big trouble, or don't we? some people are holding out and saying, this isn't a problem we can slither through this thing. where are you on that? >> no. i think it is a problem. in fact, you know, we have slowly stair stepped our way into this mess and certainly
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the gop caucus, right on right crime perpetrated there with the different messages and you know, who's on top of who? who's the leading voice today? done nothing more than muddled the debate for a lot of the american people right now. you're seeing it begin to reflect in the polls. beginning to see it reflect amongst some of the other members of the caucus who are just sick and tired of not getting to a point of resolution. so i think that there are very serious people there beginning to step up with the party on both sides, quite frankly, to move the participants to a point where we can actually begin to get something done. i think, chris, there will be a deal done. the question is, right now, what exactly does it look like, and who's prepared to stand before the american people and say, we did the best that we could whether short term or long term to begin to solve this problem. >> take a look at, i believe, anyway, south carolina republican lindsey graham told the "new york times" he and his fellow republicans are themselves to blame for this impasse. from lindsey graham, our problem, made a big deal for three months. how many republicans have been
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seen on tv saying i'm not going to raise the debt limit? we have no one to blame but ourselves. i hate ballistic references, let me tell you, david and michael, i think a of bank robbing team. carrying guns bunt don't intend to use them. they don't want to kill anybody. the holdup, don't use the guns. mcconnell. don't blow up the country. you want the money, don't blow up -- basically found themselves in a situation they couldn't rob the bank, couldn't get what they wanted, didn't really know what they wanted and couldn't shoot anybody. a weird situation we're in on the republican side. >> the way i see it, too, it's really like saying, we're not going to give oxygen to granny unless you give us what we want. and so that was spending cuts, otherwise we explode the economy. that's not a very responsible opening -- >> why is it bad politics? >> what's turning out, they're looking unreasonable, because basically, raising the debt
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ceiling is a mandatory action that has never been exploited, really politically in this way, for decades. democrats and republicans when they were in charge of congress both went through and they did this, because it was making good on decisions previously made. kind of a mature thing to do. but the republican party, tea party eyes, they said, this is an opportunity for us to exploit, but the only way they can exploit this is by blowing up the village to save the village and there are enough republicans in the leadership, not a lot, but enough, who don't want to be blamed for that and you see them coming out of the -- >> also here's mitch mcconnell, leader of the senate republicans, just on "the laura ingrams show" admitting the president will be able to blame this all on this party. listen to this guy, a shrewd pow. listen to mcconnell. >> i refuse to help barack obama get reelected by marching republicans into a position where we have co-ownership of a bad economy. if we go into default he will
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say that the republicans are making the economy worse and try to convince the public maybe with some merit if you know, people stop getting their social security checks and military families start not getting letters saying -- saying service people overseas don't get paid, maybe -- it's an argument, he would have a good chance of winning and all of a sudden we are co-ownership. we have co-ownership of a bad economy. that is very bad positions going into elections. >> let's look at the poll numbers. just eluded to them a couple minutes ago. the latest quinnipiac poll. blame republicans. 48% and 34% blame president obama if the country fails to raise the debt ceiling. you've seen those numbers i guess. what do you make of them? >> a telltale sign and speak to what mr. mcconnell referred to the interview with laura. the reality for the gop right now is, they walked out of the
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2010 election with a lot of momentum, a very strong economic message, which galvanized the country, and then instead of taking that momentum and building and growing into the argument they needed to make, whether on the debt limit or future spending or whatever it happened to, they got mired in all kinds of stuff. the american people are saying, look, it's been seven months. what are you going to do? so now you're going to have a situation where the party's got to reconcile with itself and how exactly they're going to go and handle this thing in the next 3 1/2 weeks. otherwise, mcconnell's got it dead right. >> i don't think they have a week or so. when asked the public, the same poll, should agreement be only spending cuts or taxes on the wealthy and big corporations? 67% to 25%. i'm in agreement with you on this. it's an issue of priorities and fairness, i would argue. >> republicans who did win the election, not much of an
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economic message but won the election by overwhelming margins now got themselves on the wrong side of a number of related economic issues. one is blowing up the economy over raising the debt ceiling. people are getting nervous about that with their own party, and that poll just shows, talking about spending cuts, or ending the medicare guarantee, which was the issue two months ago, the people, american pub politic public saying, these guys are not being reasonable. barack obama looks reasonable and on policies, we're not sure we agree. >> back up. you were saying blaming for the state of the u.s. economy. barack obama or the recent president, george w. bush. they say bush 54, barack obama 27. however, in fairness to all, bush w. is probably not going to try to get re-elected at this point. not running against that fella, i don't think. doesn't do him much good to blame bush coming into next year. your thoughts, michael? >> exactly right.
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take exception to a couple of things david has said already. one is that there was an economic message that was a very strong message in 2010 that was, stop the spending. the members in the caucus right now came to congress with a singular mission. help bring the spending under control. the president has yet to identify literally what it is he's prepared to cut. whether it's entitlement in defense or any other part of the budget. that's a wall the republican it's find themselves up against. >> your party is -- a good argument. look at michele bachmann, whose argument doesn't make sense. she argued about the united states has the option of default last night on greta van susteren on fox. one of those people in the back seat complaining, not trying to drive the car, just talking. here she is on greta last night. >> no. we won't. we won't get downgraded if we pay the interest on the debt. the president knows and secretary geithner know that we
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have sufficient money to pay the interest on the debt. >> why is moody's saying that to scare the country, then? >> what they're saying is that if we fail to pay the interest on the debt, they'd be downgraded. there's no reason to do that. we have plenty of money to pay the interest on the debt. that's why they're playing politics. >> this is how you earn the title balloon head. when it comes in. i'm telling you, people on the right, the guy on last night, that's when they put the balloon head on. today, moody's said standard & poor's will lower the rating if we pay down payment and not the other debt. they have the guts to come on the show and i appreciate that. name one expert you're talking about. this horse sense they're relying on. i raised a family. i know -- what are you talking about we can all disagree. we all have areas of ignorance. mine is international finance. when every single expert says
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we've got to pay our bills or we're in trouble, doesn't anybody listen to that? >> america has a choice. this is what the election is about. the choices that happen in elections. they can either listen to michele bachmann or timothy geithner. >> you deal with right and left and center. what is the congresswoman saying that makes sense to you? >> well, i think as an overall sense it's just the idea that she's prepared, as she's articulated, to go and tackle these issue. going back to the argument played in 2010 by a lot of republicans running at the time, that we want to deal first and foremost with spending. not the tax issues. >> i know. what about the debt? wait a minute. >> with respect to the debt? she's got it half right, and reality of it is, moody fills out rest of it saying, i know this is a bond lawyer, many year working. >> i know you know your stuff. >> the reality is, if you don't pay, you can pay part a, if you don't pay part b, is that bad? the impact on bond holders, the
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residual income not coming in, that increases your interest rate. that pushes the market down, and it's a real problem, and that's the problem right now with the -- >> i think we have another problem. the far right that doesn't want to face facts. i agree ideologues on the right and left rarely deal with actual fact. rather deal with philosophy. the hard-liner continuing to blame the president as the lead shirr meets at the white house as we speak. a few members earlier today. let's listen to their cacophony. >> instead you have a scarer in chief who goes out and frightens senior citizens with wrong information. >> i'm here today standing with my colleagues to ask the president to dispense with political rhetoric, dispense with scare tactics. >> we need to work together, mr. president, to solve problems. not to make political threats, not to take hostages.
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>> well, the leader of that faction, by the way, one louis gohmert. most well known at a birther. michael, defend this guy. is this a wacko wing of your party? >> now i know why i was hired. right? okay. >> i want you to be our spotter on the far right. >> no. i think, again, you know -- i know it's kind of repetitive, but it is really where the party has started this thing but it's come off the rails. there was a legitimate argument that many of these members was making a year ago and left about spending in washington. now that has become muddled, because when you have, you know, boehner message trumped by cantor and cantor trumped by mcconnell, people don't know where we are and they need to solidify the message, focus how they're going to go to the american people over the next week and go to the white house and negotiate this thing so they can come out on top. >> you guy, your guys, michael, are delegitimizing themselves.
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>> i agree. >> by the minute. >> i'm not arguing. i agree on that. >> by the way, in the words of the great al roker and from nbc, if you kids don't stop causing trouble i'm going to stop the car. anyway, thank you, david, and michael. coming up, democrats have found a new -- boogeyman in the debt fight. it's majority leader eric cantor. taking all the heat. mr. troublemaker. clashing with everybody, right, left and center. cantor will -- not far right. he may be the tea party's hero or everybody else's goat. let's find out what he's all about. the new kid on the block in terms of big time politic. eric cantor of richmond, virginia. why is he causing so much trouble? you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc.
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presidential candidate ron paul launching his first ad campaign pushing back against raising the debt ceiling. >> oh, gosh. ron paul's running the ad in both iowa and new hampshire. a six figure in each state. may be the largest by any candidate so far in the 2012 campaign. we'll be right back.
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the speaker and i have consistently been on the same page, and it's just as he laid out in terms of the principles that we are operating under. that our conference is behind
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that we're not going to raise the debt ceiling if we don't have cuts in excess, a that we don't want to raise taxes, and that we want to structurally change the system so that we stop this from happening again. >> welcome back to "hardball." reminds me of a p.o.w. saying something he can't believe. emerged at the lightning rod in debt negotiations right now and today's democrats made clear he's the villain. they've been waiting for alex and ron, let's talk about this, ron. democrats made clear cantor is not going to be the focus of their anger. got a name for their pain. shuck schumer and majority leader harry reid both today. let's listen. >> there's really only one person who has not made any concessions of all the eight, nine in that room, and that is majority leader cantor.
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he is basically standing in the way, and it's a shame. it's a shame. >> house majority leader eric cantor showing that he shouldn't even be at the table. and republicans agree he shouldn't be at the table. he walked out of the meeting with the vice president of the united states. it was childish. >> these are getting personal. these commentaries right now. ron, to call somebody childish, he is younger than a lot of these other guys, but they don't just mean that. >> no. he's becoming a perfect face for republican incorrigibility around the tax issue and the sort of juvenile attitude that the tea party people are bringing to the fight. you've got to wonder with eric cantor, did he ever have a strategy going into these talks that would result in the debt ceiling being raised and him getting a good deal on spending cuts while giving up just a little on the revenue side? he doesn't seem to have had an end-game strategy. it seems to be his high cool yearbook page again. i want what i want when i want it.
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>> that's right. alex, that was apparently in his high school yearbook. the smart move, whether you're a dog day afternoon in a bank robbery, whatever, the barricade situation is never the one you want to be in. ultimately the barricade situation falls. you fall. never set up a barricade which looks like what he put himself into and the tea party. >> mcconnell's plan is evidence of how far off the rails this is. he's painted himself effectively into a corner. >> paint of picture of eric cantor. tell us about him. >> okay. first of all, constitutionally, a big comparison being made now is between the president and eric cantor. they are constitutionally as far off as two people could be. aside from the yearbook quote, eric cantor is notoriously partisan, brash, up and comer and remember in 2009, this is the guy that circled the republicans and got them to vote against a bill. stimulus bill. not known as a party crossing,
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across the aisle bipartisan minded fellow in congress. >> he knows which way the wind is blowing in this party? he's smart? >> to some degree, powerful. got john boehner to walk back from a broader package. he yields influence because he's the face of the tea party. >> speaking for himself, told his version ever the event to reporter, saying the president stormed out of the meeting, his own meeting at the white house and cantor said, "obama, the way they talk answer the president, got agitated seemingly and sat there long enough and no other president, ronal reagan would sit there like this. this and that, he's reached the point something's got to give and he said to me, eric, don't call my bluff, i'm going to the american people with this". there you have it pap democratic aide rebutted that story saying for somebody that knows how to walk out of a meeting you think he'd know it when he saw it. he rudely interrupted the president three times while the president was wrapping up the meeting.
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ron reagan, two different accounts of the meeting. one puts the president in a good light. the other one is eric cantor putting himself in a very good light. >> well, the he said/he said situation. in this case you got to wonder. barack obama, the guy who pulled the trigger on the bin laden operation. the guy who pulled the trigger on the somali pirate operation when where they shot the hostage-taker in the head. is he really going sweat through his socks sitting across the table from eric cantor? i think not. i trust his version much better than cantor's. >> i would also say, chris, this is what the white house is using. this is a great moment for the white house. obama setting aside the bin laden stuff, there's been this contention that obama's being weak, hasn't defined the issues, the marriage issue, can't establish his platform and here he is laying down the line with eric cantor. >> now you have the white house sort of embracing this narrative
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and even the fund-raising around it. >> remember, one guy is president of the united states having -- the other, congressman from richmond with no statewide potential. look at the interesting fight, you know, intramurals are more fun. making a shown of unity with eric cantor. like the al and tipper kiss, i guess. watch this thing and listen. >> allow me to say -- we have been in this fight together, and any suggestion that the role of eric has played in this meeting has been anything less than helpful is just wrong. >> well, that's called a cover-up, i think. >> i think john boehner's probably feeling pretty good. at least a little better than he was feeling a few days or a week ago. at the end of the day, we don't know exactly what will happen, at the end of the day seems to me john boehner can go back to his people on the republican
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side and say i could have brought you unprecedented spending cuts that you liked, with just a little bit of revenue raising there on the side, and we could have solved this whole debt ceiling issue and lowered the deficit at the same time, but eric cantor blew it all up. and look what we've got now. >> your dad cut a deal with my boss, tip o'neill, you know. he cut the deal because he just lost an election and gave tip a good deal. and tip, a smart guy, my boss, the speaker said, yeah. that's the difference between him and eric cantor. anyway, thank you very much. takes two sides, two sides to tango and they're not going to right. why these guys aren't pros yet. thank you, alex wagner, and up and coming pro and ron reagan. >> thanks. you're a very theatrical fellow tonight, ron. a new word in our game, politics as a narrative. you've done it well. thanks. fox news host says he can't remember -- this is the most
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ludicrous comment in recent american history. a right wing commentator says he can't remember that the united states was ever hit by a terrorist attack anytime in the first decade of this century. can't remember one. not even one! that's in the "sideshow." where he belongs. this is "hardball," only on msnbc. >> announcer: this past year alone there's been a 67% spike
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back to "hardball" now. the "sideshow." revisionist history 101. eric propping up george w. strangely forgetting the terrorist attack of september 11th. >> certainly between 2000 and -- i don't remember any terrorist attacks on american soil during that period of time. >> i don't remember any?
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you don't remember any attacks between 2000 and 2008. any? try again. think back to 2001. does that trigger your memory? you think that's bad? no one on that five-person panel you just saw ever corrected him. next up, comedic therapy. we learned of michele bachmann husband marcus run as clinic that promises to cure, their word, gays, homosexual behavior. brought on professional jerry seinfeld to cure him of his comedic urging. >> having trouble, jon, having that urge to ridicule again? >> yeah, presidential candidate's husbands trying to cure gay people while -- >> uh-huh. okay. >> wow. okay. ah --
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i'm coming in. >> oh, really? >> you need to get it out. what's your body wanting you to say? >> i don't know. something like -- he's so gay, he calls "top gun "that he volleyball movie. oh, my god! wow. >> no. no. >> aren't you -- aren't you -- ever tempted by this stuff? >> of course, i'd love to say, dr. marcus bachmann buys brawny towels for the packaging. i have that in me. >> i know. >> so gay, richard simmons tells him to tone it down. >> any [ bleep ] -- >> oh, no! no. >> interesting area they're working here. anyway, speak of bachmann, she may need brush up on her yiddish. specifically, pronunciation of chutzpah. >> the president doesn't want to the confronted with spending. he has a lot of chutzpah.
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he spent trillions on the stimulus. it failed. >> that's right up with her history. finally, good-bye and good luck to the producer of "hardball" all these years. she's done great work day in and day out. sorry to see her go. congratulations. up next, the rupert murdoch scandal getting serious on this side of the atlantic. the fbi just got involved. how far will they go and how far will this go? you're watching "hardball" on msnbc.
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hello, here's what's happening.
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minnesota lawmakers reportedly reached a budget deal it end the longest state shut down in u.s. history snb f biopened an investigation into allegations that news corp associates tried to hack into the cell phones of 9/11 victims. betty ford was rest today in grand rapids michigan. now back it "hardball."
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my message to you now, sort of -- it's just do the decent thing. you can't -- you can't hide away from this level of public anguish and anger. >> welcome back to "hardball" that was, of course, british deputy prime minister, urge, rupert murdoch and former news of the world eder rebecca brooks to fully cooperate with parliament's investigation of the operation run by murdoch. anyway, the fbi in this country opened up an investigation into whether the news corporation run by murdoch hacked into anybody here involved with september 11th. the victims especially their phones and want to know if the same kind of things happened here that happened over there. scotland yard made its ninth arrest in a widening scandal over in britain. how far will this go? joining us, u.s. senator barbara boxer from california. do you think the fbi should investigate the newscorp and rupert murdoch?
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>> absolutely and senator jay rockefeller, chairman of the committee of which i am a senior member, he joined me and we asked for an investigation by the department of justice and the security and exchange commission. listen, chris, there are two laws that really may be implicated here, that may have been broken here. one is the foreign corrupt practices act that passed in the '70s. one is the so-called wiretap act. and american corporations can't break american laws, and rupert murdoch, according to reports, became an american citizen. his corporation is american, because he wanted to be able to own tv stations. well, the fact is, you have to abide by american law. >> let me ask you, do you believe in he bribed foreign officials? isn't that what we're talking about? his corporation? >> well, it's not a question of whether i believe it. the reports are coming out of britain that, in fact, police were bribed. we don't know if it's true. if it is true, that in itself is
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a violation of the foreign corrupt practices act, because that passed a long time ago, and the reason was that business communities were looking at each other and saying, america doesn't really have the best reputation on corporations and they wanted to have some stronger laws, and so this passed, signed by jimmy carter, so long ago, in the '70s. so, you know, if you believe what we're being told out of britain, it looks like they did bribe officials. >> do you think your republican colleagues would support a subpoena of rupert murdoch who is so much in bed with newscorp that it would stop before it brought a committee to the senate? >> i don't really believe we're at that point yet, but i can tell you i've spoken with chairman rockefeller and he and i both believe that it may come to that at some point that we're going to have some hearings but we're not there yet. rupert murdoch has, in fact, testified before the commerce committee before.
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>> do you think his becoming an american citizen itself was somewhat suspect? i mean, you deal with immigration all the time in california. i've never seen a 15-minute effort to become a citizen so successful. did this guy have pull with the reagan administration? how did he do it? i've always been curious about that. >> i don't know, chris. reports are very clear that he wanted to become an american, because he wanted the advantages here, to own, you know, tv stations, and the fact of the matter is, he couldn't have done it if he wasn't an american citizen. i don't know what -- what went on there, but the bottom line is, fine. you know, if he wanted to become an american citizen, fine, but then you have to abide by our laws, and you can't hack into our people. and you can't take bribes, anywhere in the world. it's illegal to do that, and there will be consequences if those things are true and according to reports, the fbi has listened to the letter that senator rockefeller and i sent
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to the justice department. we hope it's true that they are looking at this, because it's very serious. >> now, it's great to have you on the show, senator boxer. from california. joining us now, martin bashir my colleague and great to have you on our network. you are a pro in this business. let's talk about this world you know better than i this whole newscorp thing in london is even bigger. what's this guy's story in terms of playing by the rules, in terms of owning politicians? >> it's hard to imagine someone quite this powerful in this country. it would be like eric cantor and barney frank having a summer drink together at his house at the same time as you, chris matthews, alongside rush limbaugh. you know, he overwhelmed and seduced everybody. he did it so effectively that in the end, the newspaper, the son, in 1987, after margaret thatcher won election, had a front page story saying, it was the sun that won it. >> i saw that headline. so they bragging a bringing
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people into -- >> absolutely. and used it over reward and punishment. if he didn't like what you were doing, he would send journalists after you and undermine you. pick a personal story that would undermine you. if he liked what you were doing, you'd be included in the news international newscorps group of -- >> tell me about page 3. naked, topless pictures of you are. >> the "sun" newspaper. still does. >> how do they do that? intimidate politicians? >> interesting story. no 2005 a cabinet minister said isn't it time we stopped having semi-naked women on page 3? rebecca brooks sent 20 semi-naked women to stand outside his constituency office and described claire short and frumpy, dumpy, ugly and jealous
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it ws a kind of humiliation and coercion. >> rupert murdoch defending news corp. with the "wall street journal." wonder how they snagged that interview? despite a public outcry mr. murdoch says the damage is nothing that will not be recovered. he said we have a reputation of great good works in this country. that's the united states. after it was aggravated by the negative headlines in recent days, he said he was just getting annoyed. i'll get over it. isn't it great to care about his feelings? isn't it how the "wall street journal" -- is this bothering you, sir? >> a journalistic endeavor. more seriously, i think that now that the attempt to buy b sky casting is over, the "times" loses money. >> the reference, is this stalingrad? is this the top of his empire that gets thrown back? >> it's more like the soviet
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empire post 1989. everything's going to start truncating and falling. you have a situation of having to withdraw from the big money interests. will he walk away from the newspapers? people are now saying, if he can't have the television that he wants, why is he investing this money in newspaper? he may even pull out of britain. >> wanted to know why he couldn't have the news -- couldn't have the television company but owned the company. >> huge profits. 9 billion pounds a year. >> good to have you. big layoffs, bailouts and mitt romney, what is he up to? a campaign ad saying whether he's a job creator or destroyer. these ads will show that she. this is "hardball." only on msnbc.
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it's 16 months until the presidential election. proof campaigning in the early stage tends to help challengers. a new mason dixon poll out in iowa. first caucus state shows mitt romney leading president obama in a matchup. 42% to 39%. romney campaigning in iowa for months and clearly helping him in this poll. the same poll found president obama would defeat michele bachmann. rather, michele bachmann in iowa, 47% to 42%. we'll be right back. i
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welcome back to "hardball." mitt romney may have more than a surging michele bachmann to
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worry about. he's been tallying his successful run as evidence he can create jobs. take a look at this. it's an ad by senator ted kennedy in his arsenal but chose not to use it in his run against romney back in '94. >> mitt romney says he saved bane and company but didn't tell you on the day he took over he had his predecessor fire hundreds of employees. the way the company was rescued with a federal bailout of $10 million. according to the globe romney's company famed to repay at least $10 million to a failed bank and the rest of us had to absorb the loss. romney, he and others made $4 million in this deal that cost ordinary people $10 million. mitt romney. maybe he is just against government when it helps working men and women. of course our question right now could the same line of attack against him work in 2012. bob strong is the democratic strategist involved in creating the ad for former senator kennedy. maggie haverman reports for "politico" which reported first on the ad.
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and this gets to the crux of the question about this ad. he runs not because he had a great successful career in massachusetts. but yet he talks about being a job creator. is he? >> well, it's the devil's in the details, right? i think he'll get very hit on this. you're already seeing the democrats trying to lure him into that fight. david axlerod is tweeting about his job creation record in massachusetts. and every run he has done, i think you'll see more of this going forward from the republicans. >> even before he was governor, bob, tell us about the basis of the factual basis you had in making that ad. >> well, the ad is entirely accurate. it was a report in "the blast globe." the reason we didn't run the ad is because senator kennedy was behind romney and was far ahead after he crushed him in a debate and after we ran a series of other ads from workers of a company he had taken over who
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were fired, had their health benefits taken away. i think it's a big problem for him, chris, in republican primaries. it was a federal bailout. everybody in america who had a savings account or a checking account helped pay for it. and i even think it's a problem in the general election, because people in michigan are going to say this is a guy who didn't want to bail out the auto industry but took a $10 million bailout for himself. >> senator kennedy in that debate pointed out the fact that mitt mitt romney didn't know any of the details. this is a ted kennedy ad that did run against romney. let's watch this one. >> i'd like for him to show me where these 10,000 jobs that he's created are. >> i don't like romney's creating jobs because he took every one of them away. >> i had worked there 30 years. and i never dreamed that i'd lose my job. >> mitt romney says he helped
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create 10,000 jobs. the former workers say something else. >> if he's created jobs, i wish he could create some here, you know, instead of taking them away. >> isn't this the problem of what companies -- equity companies do often? they go to a company that's in trouble. and they cut costs by firing people. they ready it for sale. they sell it make some money. the very nature of the job costs jobs. >> absolutely. there's no question. and this is why this is such a double-edged sword for mitt romney. he stopped making claims like that, where he said i made 10,000 jobs. now he is not getting into specifics. in his opening remarks when he declared for president, he said i created some jobs. i wasn't always successful. i think this is going to be a huge issue for him. not just in the republican primary, but also in the democratic, you know, against a democrat in the general election. this is the sole thing people are focused on right now. that ad you just showed is incredibly effective because it's real people. and you will see more of that
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coming out. >> bob, tell us what you can of the record of bain capital in doing the chop shop work in the equity firms, where you buy, sell, and fire a bunch of people. you're a stranger there, and it's easy to fire people because you don't know anybody. >> well, chris, you're right. that's what they do. and that's how they make money. and, you know, at the same time by the way that he was getting this $10 million bailout, he and his partners are getting $10 million for the takeover of ba oorvegs n. aye -- of bain. what makes that ad so powerful is that it's hard enough to run against your opponent. to have to run against real blue collar americans that you've hurt is very, very difficult. these folks spoke in their own words. i had written a script. as sooner as they started filming, we talked and said, we don't need a script.
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these folks want to say their own thing. they were so powerful and so real. they came to massachusetts to try to talk to him and he refused for days to meet with them, which kept the story alive. i assume he'd get better advice than that now, but he can't undo his past record. >> no question it will be a big part of the campaign. if he gets the nomination, you're going to see this as the model for other things. they will point to points of his record where he created jobs, success with staples, for instance. but it's such a mixed bag that it's hard for him to point to, somewhere like his health care issue. >> it's a pretty thin record. thank you, bob schum, as always. it was a great ad. you should have run it just to run up the score. it wasn't the ad. it was the debate. >> i agree with that. he was fabulous in that debate. when we return, the battle against stupidity. i don't use that word very
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often. you're watching "hardball" on msnbc.
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let me finish tonight with the power of stupidity. i'm not talking about ignorance.
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there area a lot of things i know nothing about. there are things that just about everybody knows that i don't. hockey is one example. but i'm talking about stupidity. it's one thing to not understand international finance and what it will mean if the united states says it can't pay its bills, if one day soon we tell the people we owe that we can't pay. no one really knows the full reality that would come that day or the day after. actually it's something to be happy not to find out. stupidity, that's different. it's saying like some members of congress are that we don't have to reckon with what will happen if america faces default. we don't have to understand what happens or even worry about understanding. all we need are people who have raised families. they'll know the right thing to do. if they say to let it slide, that's what we should do. well, that's the real fight tonight and the week ahead. between the people who fear american bankruptcy and those who refuse to think about it, who say it doesn't matter if the united states defaults or they don't care if the united states ends up as one of the world's dead beat countries. that's "hardball" for now. "the last word with lawrence